Rowley, Essex County, Massachusetts was first settled in 1639.
from Historic Homes and Institutions by Ellery Bicknell Crane
Nathaniel Wells, eldest child of Thomas (1) and Abigail (Warner) Wells, was born in Ipswich, Massachusetts, about 1640. He was a farmer all his life in the place of his birth, and died December 15, 1675.
He married, October 29, 1661, Lydia Thurley (the name was variously spelled Thorla, Thorlo, Thurlow, and Thurley), born April 1. 1640, daughter of Richard and Jane Thurley. and granddaughter of Francis Thurley, of Newburyport, Massachusetts. Richard Thurley was a planter at Rowley, Massachusetts, and later Removed to Newbury, where he built a bridge at his own cost across the Newbury river. The general court fixed a rate of toll for animals on May 3, 1654. He had two sons—Thomas and Francis.
The children of Nathaniel and Lydia (Thurley) Wells were:
1. Abigail, born August 17, 1662, married Edmund Potter.
2. Martha, born January 13, 1664, died February 12, of the same year.
3. Sarah, born March 10, 1665, married John Day, published January 27, 1691.
5. Thomas, born June 19, 1673, married Elizabeth .
6. Elizabeth, married George Hart, published May 5, 1698.
7. Lydia, married Richard Kimball
Planter is an archaic term for a settler. Plantation was a method of colonization where settlers were "planted" abroad. A plantation is also the kind of large farm that was the economical basis of many American Colonies and owners of these farms were also called planters.
Early European settlers in the American colonies were mostly farmers and craftsmen. They had to work hard to provide daily neccesities for themselves.